Kaspersky Lab has lost an important lawsuit. The American Court of Appeals finds that the decision of the American government to prohibit the use of the software of the Russian cybersecurity firm by federal governments can be upheld.

This leaves an earlier decision of the district court. In 2017, Kaspersky sued the U.S. government, when it stated that the Russian company may be cooperating with the Russian government. Kaspersky thought that was unconstitutional. It also stated that the claims are based on subjective, non-technical public sources, including uncontrolled and often anonymous media reports, related claims and rumours.

Prohibition persists

However, the court held that the U.S. government has the right to prohibit the purchase of software from a specific provider, provided that there is actually a security risk involved. With or without Kaspersky’s cooperation, the experts explained, the Russian government could use Kaspersky’s products as a backdoor in federal information systems, according to the court.

According to the court, the choice of Homeland Security in 2017 was therefore a justified one. Last year, the decision was made that all government agencies and federal governments should make plans to phase out Kaspersky’s software. This decision is based on the security risks that cling to the use of Kaspersky products on federal information systems, stated Homeland Security.

Homeland Security responded not only to the rumours about Russian manipulation of the American presidential elections in 2016, but also to earlier accusations from 2014. Then the NSA was hacked and that would have happened through a back door in Kaspersky software.

For Kaspersky, at least, it is a major problem that this decision is maintained. As a result, the company loses many potential customers and sees other Western countries banning its products or switching to other antivirus software providers. The company is now trying to turn the tide through its Global Transparency Initiative, where it allows governments and experts to view its source code and store data outside of Russia.

This news article was automatically translated from Dutch to give Techzine.eu a head start. All news articles after September 1, 2019 are written in native English and NOT translated. All our background stories are written in native English as well. For more information read our launch article.